The ensuing battle placed the individual members into familiar roles. Blackwell used his formidable stealth capabilities to sneak in and backstab. Kel and Asphodel got into the forefront, with Zola, Jobi, and Zerak using missile style attacks. The paladin, Dudley, helped out with the fighting and the two clerics, Abraham and Zeva, helped out with healing and some boosting spells. Midway during the battle, a new combatant entered the fray. This one struck terror in all the metal weapon and metal armor using party members for it was a rust monster (dun dun dun dunnnnn)! The bow wielders, Jobi's magic missiles were concentrated on this creature to help minimize the possible damage to the party's metal objects. Zerak even used his wonderfully graphic attack where a swarm of spiders is vomited out of his mouth (Jobi just loves seeing this). One of the orcs broke the weak pipe in order to direct the hot, pressurized raw sewage to attack Asphodel with and scored a direct hit on her (and a couple of his fellow orcs) causing some damage and possible disease. The battle concluded with only a few minor injuries suffered by the heroes.
Moving into the tunnel where the rust monster came out of, the party cautiously made their way deeper into the sewer system. The tunnel was actually a very large pipe, some thirty or so feet in diameter. Blackwell led the way, searching for traps and trying to ensure nothing surprised his friends. When they all were inside the pipe, that's when the enemy struck. Three extremely hungry rat swarms came pouring out along the walls between the festering piles of sewage and converged on the members in the back, namely Zerak, Jobi, the paladin, and the two clerics. At the same time three more mutant flumphs attacked at the front of the party. These flumphs had a very difficult time battling the party and our heroes made short work of them. The rats were a bit more successful in harassing the other members, though. Zerak used his burning hands spells to good effect and Jobi sent a swarm of spiders after one of the rat swarms. Once Kel was free from battling the flumphs, she ran over to where the rats were and began using her shield as a large rat swatter. No one suffered much from this battle, except Jobi was pretty sure that she contracted a disease from the rat bites she fell victim to.
The pipe they were following finally ended and opened up into a large natural cavern. The pipe entered the cavern about ten feet from the cavern's floor. Immediately in front of them, there was a large puddle of brackish water formed from the trickle of dirty water from the pipe into the cavern below. Asphodel could see a large centipede-like creature off in the distance near the back of the cavern and decided to fly around to see what else may be residing in this cavern. Meanwhile, Zola used her create water spells to clear out some of the sewage so the party could climb down to the cavern floor. As the party reached the floor, Asphodel discovered that there was another one of the strange, plague infected centipedes and three more mutated flumphs. The flumphs also saw her and spat out their ectoplasmic goop at her with one landing a hit. Then the goo solidified quickly on her and she fell to the cavern floor some twenty or so feet below her. Zola closed in with the first centipede-like creatures, which the party determined looked a lot like a mutated slime crawler, only to end up hit by three out of four of its tentacles and getting damaged and paralyzed, effectively out of the fight for the moment.
The other slime crawler and the flumphs closed with the rest of the party. Dudley the paladin rushed in to attack the slime crawler. Blackwell snuck in after the first one to help distract it from trying to eat Zola. And the rest of the party split their efforts between attacking the flumphs or the crawlers. Unfortunately for the paladin, he was hit hard by the crawler and was effectively dead on the monster's first attack. The two clerics thought quickly and used their channel energy abilities to help heal everyone who was hurt, and they managed to get the paladin back from near death to consciousness.
Unfortunately for Dudley, the slime crawler was very hungry and viciously attacked him again, nearly biting him in half and surely killing him. The flumphs were able to goop Kel and Zerak. Kel was able to keep moving due to her newly found cleric abilities, but once again, Zerak, was stuck fast and unable to break free from the goop.
Though the party was victorious in the end, they did suffer the loss of Dudley. Asphodel did a quick recon of the next chamber and saw that it contained some more of the mutant flumphs and strange one-eyed creatures in addition to fissures in the earth that exposed the raw Spellplague energies. Geysers of translucent blue flames shot out of the ground randomly. Since our heroes were a bit depleted in their capabilities and the fact that one of the group had fallen, they decided to retreat out of the sewers, report in, and gather some more supplies for fighting these creatures.
Back on the surface of Neverwinter, our heroes took Dudley back to the temple of Desna for proper handling, visited Telliann and gave her an update, visited Blackwell's parents to pickup some explosives, and purchased some vials of alchemist's fire.
Zerak had come up with the start of a plan that needed those items and next week we'll see if the plan has the desired effect.
Once everyone rested that night, only Blackwell suffered an escalation of the unknown disease/condition that all our heroes share. The disease is now affecting our heroes in the following ways:
Stayed tuned for next week's deadly encounters and see who makes it out alive...